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“An escape from reality...”

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Sandals Royal Plantation
Ranked #3 of 36 Hotels in Ocho Rios
Saint John, Canada
Level Contributor
28 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
“An escape from reality...”
Reviewed 31 March 2014

This is our second visit to the resort, and we were not disappointed. It's very quiet and relaxing, not for the party crowd. That's what we wanted, and what we got. I could poke at a bunch of little things, but overall, the service and the food was excellent. Went next door to Grande Riviera once to eat, the shuttles go back and forth about every 15-20 minutes. The returning guests dinner has gone from the Terrace Restaurant to the Conference Room - the numbers have increased about 50% in 3 years. What does that say about the resort?

The up side:
Upscale food and drinks. Friendly staff. The weather. Doing nothing but eat and sit in the sun.

The down-lo:
The lunch buffet at the Terrace is good but selection is weak, but you can order a la carte. The unlimited golf cost me over $100/round. They lost some of the beach during Hurricane Sandy (no pun intended), but we were able to get some chairs down by the water with no problems.

I would suggest Club Mobay for the Montego Bay airport. Waited 1 hour in long lineup arriving, but no more than 15 minutes departing. It's all in the timing.

A shout-out to Oratio (absolutely) & Sean, our butlers, Claudine, our housekeeping lady, Lorna at the Gift Shop (for all the dance moves), Rona (I think) at the Spa, Lenworth our personal chef, Ojay the pool guy, Lucien the grill master. Lively Up Yourself!

Room Tip: For the most quiet rooms, pick the East tower facing away from the resort, as the entertainment can...
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  • Stayed March 2014, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank TansRFading
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cassie C, Review Coordinator at Sandals Royal Plantation, responded to this review, 5 April 2014
We're so happy that you had another wonderful vacation with us. It seems like you enjoyed every minute of your stay at Sandal Royal Plantation and that is exactly the kind of excellent feedback we love to hear. Thank you for your review!

We look forward to another stellar experience with you in the near future!
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London, Canada
Level Contributor
42 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 67 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 March 2014

If you are the type to seek sun, sand and relaxation then this might be your destination. With the small number of rooms, two beach areas and a pool this is about as close as you are going to get to a private villa. I can’t control the loud mouth vacationers who think they are the only ones that paid for their trips, clearly but we remarked many a time about how peaceful it was and that you could sit and just read and listen to the ocean. The beach is no Veradero and not suited for long walks like Punta Cana but offers everything you need. The smaller beach does allow for good service as your beach butler is never far away and there is a restaurant right at the west beach.

If you are looking for more socialization then you can take the 30 second walk up the beach to the Grand Riviera, which is clearly more populated, and “upbeat”. There are a number of free water activities including a glass bottom boat tour, which is a nice touch.

The staff here is exceptional, truly. They clearly enjoy their lot because you cannot pass a maintenance person on a walkway without them greeting you and asking how your vacation is going and if they can do anything to assist. When they aren’t greeting you they are singing. Donard and Chase were our butlers and you could tell they really wanted you to avail yourselves of their services so that they could have a hand in making your vacation the best.

There is an east and west building. We stayed in the east building, 3rd floor, room 305 and had a great view of the ocean. The lower rooms in the east might have more obstructed views due to the trees. There is a bit of road noise if you like to sleep with the balcony doors open but we didn’t find it disturbing. You might want to be in the west building if you have any mobility issues as it has an elevator and a walkway to the restaurant/main level and there are a number of stairs down to the beach. The entertainment takes place in the main building sandwiched between the two residences so if you are west you will hear it clearly but it is all done by 10:00 pm regardless. Even we could tolerate that despite being in our room every night before that. (And we’re not that old.) The hotel itself is in the heart of Ocho Rios.

The food is good. The main restaurant offers a smaller buffet than you might expect every day. It has everything you need and the food is tasty but may be a bit smaller than one would expect to see. The a la carte selections can take a little longer to prepare, which is to be expected, but there were a couple occasions where we thought it was longer than you would wait in a restaurant. The French restaurant, Le Papillon, was very good and we made a point to go twice. And again, the staff-exceptional. There was a Jamaican themed night outdoors at the main restaurant and it was also exceptional with jerk chicken, pork and lobster tails. I would not pass this up for any a la carte.

The million-dollar question is always, would you go back? Not at this price. We agreed to spend a little more to chase our perfect vacation and even though this resort was very quiet with great staff, it did not set itself apart enough for us to make this our destination of choice for vacations. We were certainly not disappointed but would try and stretch our dollars into two trips or explore other destinations we have not seen yet. That is just one vacationers opinion and I would still give this resort a 5-star rating.

Room Tip: Upper floors have best views. West building has an elevator.
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  • Stayed March 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
5 Thank Rok67
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cassie C, Review Coordinator at Sandals Royal Plantation, responded to this review, 29 March 2014
Thank you for your review of Sandals Royal Plantation. We're so glad to read that you had such an amazing stay with us. We always want to ensure that our guests have a romantic and relaxing vacation and I'm glad we accomplished that goal during your stay.

We can't wait to welcome you back for another great stay.
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Level Contributor
146 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 March 2014 via mobile

This year will be our third time to Royal Plantation and all we can say is WOW.... I should preface my review by saying that if you're into a big, boisterous, lively, party spirited resort this is not the place for you. Now, if you want a small, intimate, top quality (food, service, and accommodation), with butlers who care about your experience at their resort...Royal Plantation is for you! If you get in the mood for a little more action during the day or the evening you can always hop on the resort shuttle and they will happily drive you next door to the Sandals Grande where you will find a ton more restaurants, bars, and activities....and when you get tired of that you can hop back on the shuttle and c'mon back home where your butler has probably rolled your bed down, left you a bedtime treat, or maybe even run you a warm bath....

You can't beat this place...trust me on this.

Stayed March 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
5 Thank SchneiderGuy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cassie C, Review Coordinator at Sandals Royal Plantation, responded to this review, 29 March 2014
We're so glad that you enjoyed your stay with us at Sandals Royal Plantation. We always want to ensure that our guests have wonderful experiences with us and it seems during your stay we accomplished our goal. Thank you for your review.

We look forward to welcoming you back soon!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sharon, Massachusetts
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 25 March 2014

We first stayed at Royal Plantation in 2002 (right after Sandal acquired it). Since then we have enjoyed four other Sandals vacations (but at other properties). Going back was a wonderful experience. It is the top of the line and we have nothing but great things to say about it.
We want to point out a few of the Sandals Superstars. Everyone we encountered was top notch but special kudos to:
Renaldo - he was a trainee bartender at the piano bar at Sandals Grand (which is right next store). One of the advantages of Royal Plantation is that you can go next store (the big resort) whenever you want. We are convinced that Renaldo has an unbelievable future with Sandals. He's destined to run the bar, all Food and Beverage or one of the resorts. His personality kept the place humming all night. He is an absolute star.
Natalia - she worked in Papillions and other restaurants. She constantly went out of her way for us.
Simaj - he was an unbelievable dive master. The hospitality is unbeatable. As he said, they are always looking for ways to turn their seven star service into eight star service.
Our butler Kenroy was always there for us as well.
Royal Plantation is our perfect vacation.

Room Tip: There are a limited number of balconies - always nice to have. But we enjoyed our stay in room 314.
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  • Stayed February 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank Roy E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cassie C, Review Coordinator at Sandals Royal Plantation, responded to this review, 29 March 2014
It's wonderful to read that you had another fabulous vacation with us at Sandals Royal Plantation. We're happy that you were pleased with our high standard of service and attention to detail. Thank you for your review.

We can't wait to welcome you back for more fantastic memories!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bournemouth
Level Contributor
11 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
Reviewed 25 March 2014

We have just returned from our 25th Wedding Anniversary holiday at the Royal Plantation. Next to our holiday in Antigua on our honeymoon this was the best yet, and over the years we have had a few! I would like to say that all the staff were wonderful and always had a smile, and gave exceptional service without being pushy. Its' truely all inclusive we did not pay for anything extra.Water sports, and trips out on the boat, surfboards and rowboats all free. The beaches were small but with the number of rooms there was plenty of room for everyone, there was never any trouble with loungers and the waiter service for drinks was great, never forgeting your order and even bringing your favourite tipple first thing. We also took our golf clubs to play at Sandals Golf . A great course with very knowlegable caddies. We managed to find the caddy we had had the previous year! Again great service. The food in the French restaurant was exceptional both for taste and presentation. Waiter service also available in the main restaurant except when you did not want it or it was a buffet.Our room was very large and had a balcony and a juliet balcony called a Royal Peacock Suite. The view from the room was lovely the only downside being the sun never appeared on the balcony so in reality we never used it.
Some of the rooms are smaller but still very nice. There is a wide range of rooms but it does not really matter which you choose as it is quiet at night after 10.00 o'clock as the entertainment moves inside to the bar.Also the area is very quiet. If you want more noise and more upbeat entertainment and activities there is also another Sandals, the Grand Riveria, close by to which there is a complementary shuttle and you can also dine there if you wish. The all butler service was a nice to have facility but do not expect real butler style they mainly arrange things for you like, transport, restaurant bookings, games of golf, etc. and they keep your fridge and ice box filled. You can contact them at any time of the day or night by mobile phone that they leave with you. All in all a well thought out and excellent venue for that special romantic break away with the one you love!

Room Tip: higher floors have better views but most have a view of some sort as none face inland.
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  • Stayed March 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank lazyjaneBournemouth
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cassie C, Review Coordinator at Sandals Royal Plantation, responded to this review, 29 March 2014
Thank you for your great review of Sandals Royal Plantation. We're so happy to read that you had a wonderful anniversary at our resort. It was a pleasure hosting you and we look forward to welcoming you back for another amazing stay.
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Brossard, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 24 March 2014

First time in a Sandals resort.
I am 30 and my gf 31.
We had a wonderful time , the staff was very very nice and the food was more than awesome !
It is a mostly calm resort, we were the youngest couple there.
Everything was perfect !
we will be back soon.

  • Stayed November 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Jonathan B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cassie C, Review Coordinator at Sandals Royal Plantation, responded to this review, 29 March 2014
We're so happy to read that you had such a wonderful stay with us at Sandals Royal Plantation. We strive to create romantic and memorable experiences for our guests and I'm so glad we were able to achieve that goal during your stay.

Thank you for your review. We look forward to welcoming you back for another great stay in the near future.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Dieppe, Canada
Level Contributor
11 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 March 2014 via mobile

We recently stayed at the Royal Plantation from March 7th to the 14th. This was our second stay at the Royal Plantation (stayed here in 2011). We have travelled to several sandals and this is by far the one with the greatest service. We really enjoyed our stay. There is never anything too much to ask for. We really liked our two buttlers (Germaine and Shelley Anne). We felt they were a perfect match to our style. We don't need for much and they were very discreet but always available. We would highly recommend them :). Their professionalism and attention to everthing was wonderful. We also met so many great staff members throughout our stay (Carolyn, Sanjay, Lucien, Natalia, Simon, Alex, Oral, Cleon, Daniello, Adrien, Andre, etc, etc.). I can honestly say we did not run in to anyone who was not helpful and pleasant! They had several students doing field placement while we were there and we found them also very helpful and pleasant.

The food was always so, so good. We particularly like the Papillon. Everything we tried there was amazing. The food at the returning guest supper was divine!

We had a great trip and cannot wait to return :)

Stayed March 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
2 Thank N L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cassie C, Review Coordinator at Sandals Royal Plantation, responded to this review, 29 March 2014
Thank you for your review of Sandals Royal Plantation. We're thrilled to read you had another incredible and memorable stay with us. Our top priority is always to exceed the expectations of our guests and we're so happy we were able to be apart of such a great memory.

We look forward to seeing you again in the near future.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Sandals Royal Plantation

Property: Sandals Royal Plantation
Address: Main Street, Ocho Rios, Jamaica
Phone Number:
Region: Caribbean > Jamaica > Saint Ann Parish > Ocho Rios
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Top resorts Hotel in Ocho Rios
#2 Romantic Hotel in Ocho Rios
#2 Family Hotel in Ocho Rios
#3 On the Beach Hotel in Ocho Rios
#3 Luxury Hotel in Ocho Rios
#3 Spa Hotel in Ocho Rios
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:5 star — Sandals Royal Plantation 5*
Number of rooms: 74
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
•All suite resort and all are serviced by butlers trained by the Guild of Professional English Butlers•2 private beaches with beach butler service•The Caribbean’s only Champagne and Caviar Bar•Exquisite International, Mediterranean, Caribbean and French cuisine•24 hour in suite dining•Complimentary transfers from this resort to all Sandals Resorts•Voted Sandals Resorts “World Leading All-Inclusive Company” 16 years in a row•Voted Sandals Resorts “Caribbean’s Leading Hotel Brand” 18 years in a row•Five Star Diamond Award - American Academy of Hospitality Sciences ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sandals Royal Plantation Hotel Ocho Rios
Royal Plantation Ocho Rios
Royal Plantation Jamaica
Sandals Royal Plantation Jamaica/Ocho Rios

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